Establish Realistic IT Resource Management Practices
Holistically balance IT supply and demand to avoid overallocation.
As CIO, you oversee a department that lacks the resource capacity to adequately meet organizational demand for new projects and services.
More projects are approved by the steering committee (or equivalent) than your department realistically has the capacity for, and you and your staff have little recourse to push back. If you have a PMO – and that PMO is one of the few that provides usable resource capacity projections – that information is rarely used to make strategic approval and prioritization decisions.
As a result, project quality and timelines suffer, and service delivery lags. Your staff are overallocated, but you lack statistical evidence because of incomplete estimates, allocations, and very little accurate data.
IT’s capacity for new project work is largely overestimated. Much of IT’s time is lost to tasks that go unregulated and untracked (e.g. operations and support work, break-fixes and other reactive work) before project work is ever approved. When projects are approved, it is done so with little insight or concern for IT’s capacity to realistically complete that work.
The shift to matrix work structures has strained traditional methods of time tracking. Day-to-day demand is chaotic, and staff are pulled in multiple directions by numerous people. As fast-paced, rapidly changing, interruption-driven environments become the new normal, distractions and inefficiencies interfere with productive project work and usable capacity data.
The executive team approves too many projects, but it is not held to account for this malinvestment of time. Instead, it’s up to individual workers to sink or swim, as they attempt to reconcile, day after day, seemingly infinite organizational demand for new services and projects with their finite supply of working hours.
Impact and Result
Instill a culture of capacity awareness. For years, the project portfolio management (PPM) industry has helped IT departments report on demand and usage, but has largely failed to make capacity part of the conversation. This research helps inject capacity awareness into project and service portfolio planning, enabling IT to get proactive about constraints before overallocation spirals, and project and service delivery suffers.
Build a sustainable process. Efforts to improve resource management often falter when you try to get too granular too quickly. Info-Tech’s approach starts at a high level, ensuring that capacity data is accurate and usable, and that IT’s process discipline is mature enough to maintain the data, before drilling down into greater levels of precision.
Establish a capacity book of record. You will ultimately need a tool to help provide ongoing resource visibility. Follow the advice in this blueprint to help with your tool selection, and ensure you meet the reporting needs of both your team and executives.
Establish Realistic IT Resource Management Practices Research & Tools
Start here – read the Executive Brief
Read our concise Executive Brief to find out why you should develop a resource management strategy, review Info-Tech’s methodology, and understand the ways we can support you in completing this project.
After each Info-Tech experience, we ask our members to quantify the real-time savings, monetary impact, and
project improvements our research helped them achieve. See our top member experiences for this blueprint and
what our clients have to say.
Average $ Saved
Average Days Saved
InfoTech's Technical Counselor was instrumental in helping to establish Amkor's IT PMO Portfolio Management department and processes. We were ab... Read More
InfoTech's Technical Counselor was instrumental in helping to establish Amkor's IT PMO Portfolio Management department and processes. We were able to stand up this new department in less than a year, saving us hundreds of hours and possible rework if we had to do this alone. The new processes will potentially help us to save millions of dollars by not doing projects that do not add value or contribute the bottom line. Read Less
City of Carlsbad
This topic is something we have never tackled before. So it's hard to quantify how much time or money it would save us. I suspect taking on the pro... Read More
This topic is something we have never tackled before. So it's hard to quantify how much time or money it would save us. I suspect taking on the process will actually take more time. But the value is in serving our organization better.
Paul was great. Couldn't have asked for a better facilitator. As for best/worst.... I think Paul's ability to
validate to us that this process is truly hard and involves a lot of guessing was very valuable. It helps us contextualize what it takes to be the type of mature IT org we want to be. As for worst, as Paul told us, it's not exactly the most exciting topic. So keeping everyone attentive was hard. But Paul was great at giving us a lot of breaks and keeping us as engaged as possible. Read Less
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency
Best part was the discussions. Paul did a great job facilitating much needed conversations amongst our different managers.
Alterra Mountain Company
A few great points to call out - Matt and his excellent facilitation skills, knowledge and bringing the team along on the journey. The tools and te... Read More
A few great points to call out - Matt and his excellent facilitation skills, knowledge and bringing the team along on the journey. The tools and templates and ensure we're thinking through all of this in the best way possible.
Wouldn't say it was the worst, it would have been nice to have the resource managers in the first part of day 1 session.
Thank you again for a great week! We're excited to start applying all the great teaching, lessons, and material Matt presented. Read Less
Montana Department of Revenue
With the exception of the meeting being brief there is no worst part. The best part is the affinity that Matt has for our PPM challenges at the De... Read More
With the exception of the meeting being brief there is no worst part. The best part is the affinity that Matt has for our PPM challenges at the Department. Read Less
Sherritt International Corporation
Our analyst listened to all of the teams input and provided some great guidance and tools on achieving our goals.
Colliers International Canada
I loved the experience. The Financial impact and the estimated amount of time saved are difficult to provide an answer for as our case involves a ... Read More
I loved the experience. The Financial impact and the estimated amount of time saved are difficult to provide an answer for as our case involves a pilot. The advice we received and the insights on how to improve what we had already started to capture is very valuable. Teodora is very knowledgeable and her input is much appreciated! Read Less
Louisiana Health Service & Indemnity Company d/b/a Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana
Best - very practical, Bill is a very good facilitator and helped us talk through some very tactical and logistical issues.
Morrison Hershfield Group Inc.
Best was the process that we need to go through to have a true resource management approach
Worst was the fact that some people got shy on certain... Read More
Best was the process that we need to go through to have a true resource management approach
Worst was the fact that some people got shy on certain days and had less to say. I am not sure if it was the subject or they just didn't like talking. Read Less
Lee County Clerk of Courts
I'm looking forward to establishing realistic IT management practices by utilizing the resource management tools I learned about today. I already ... Read More
I'm looking forward to establishing realistic IT management practices by utilizing the resource management tools I learned about today. I already have spreadsheets that I created itemizing my staffs duties and responsibilities, but by learning about the distribution of resources I think it'll paint a better picture for me in reference to the roles my folks hold and their working hours in where their time is spent. Read Less
Agriculture Financial Services Corporation
Best part is having an analyst to continue to get direction and confirmation that I was making progress. Sometimes it is hard to celebrate the lit... Read More
Best part is having an analyst to continue to get direction and confirmation that I was making progress. Sometimes it is hard to celebrate the little wins and appreciate that change takes time. Matt was really good at pointing out that things were progressing and giving encouragement to take the next steps. Read Less
Holy Name Medical Center
Best: she listens and provides very good feedback
Public Investment Corporation SOC LTD.
Populating the template for the first time is always the worst. It needs time commitment.
Once done, its very good to see how the information come... Read More
Populating the template for the first time is always the worst. It needs time commitment.
Once done, its very good to see how the information comes together and I am able to make quick decisions on capacity and when i can onboard new projects Read Less
Libro Credit Union
Thank you Travis for walking me through the tool, you were patient, answered all my questions, set up follow up meetings and followed through on yo... Read More
Thank you Travis for walking me through the tool, you were patient, answered all my questions, set up follow up meetings and followed through on your commitment (I received the documentation).
The tool meets my needs and in beyond my expectations. As noted in the meeting I was having a not wonderful day. At the end of this call, you had brought a ray of Sunshine to me day, I am very excited to work with you. Read Less
W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc.
knowledgeable consultation and useful content. Ugbad was great to work with and we look gorward to speaking with her in the future.
Virginia Department of the Treasury
This was just a couple of small meetings, but for an Agency that does not have the budget for large tools, this was very informative and provided m... Read More
This was just a couple of small meetings, but for an Agency that does not have the budget for large tools, this was very informative and provided me an avenue to still be organized without the purchase of major software. Read Less
Kentucky Housing Corporation
There is not a worst part for all of my conversations with Matt has always been helpful and concise. Having the ability to obtain tools and documen... Read More
There is not a worst part for all of my conversations with Matt has always been helpful and concise. Having the ability to obtain tools and documentation at any given time was awesome. It has saved me so much time in research and stress, very thankful to have a license for this wonderful portal. Then having a person who you consistently are working with is also a big plus.
It is had to put a dollar amount on what savings are - but extremely valuable to me and my corporation. Read Less
Gokul is so easy to talk to and bounce ideas off. His in depth knowledge of project management shows with each of our conversations. I find mysel... Read More
Gokul is so easy to talk to and bounce ideas off. His in depth knowledge of project management shows with each of our conversations. I find myself eagerly looking forward to each new session. Read Less
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas, Inc.
I appreciated having the sounding board and insights from our meetings. The biggest challenge was on my end in just being able to make the time to... Read More
I appreciated having the sounding board and insights from our meetings. The biggest challenge was on my end in just being able to make the time to fully absorb and implement the content. Read Less
Arkansas Blue Cross Blue Shield
City of Virginia Beach
No worst part, and the best part was the advice to start using change requests when lack of resources impact the projects deliverables.
Modern Woodmen of America
It was an eye opening discussion. We were able to identify some areas we need to shore up, but overall we were surprised to hear we are doing pret... Read More
It was an eye opening discussion. We were able to identify some areas we need to shore up, but overall we were surprised to hear we are doing pretty well with our product backlog and how we are gathering resources for it. Read Less
Agriculture Financial Services Corporation
availability of tools and ability for analyst to adjust and talk to my specific scenarois
City of Saskatoon, SK
Matt is an extremely knowledgeable advisor and has really helped fill in gaps in areas that we were struggling with. The workshop that we had in M... Read More
Matt is an extremely knowledgeable advisor and has really helped fill in gaps in areas that we were struggling with. The workshop that we had in May really opened our eyes to the value of estimating available resource capacity at the time of intake and even though we have not fully implemented this model yet we know it will help us mature our process greatly. Read Less
Kentucky Housing Corporation
The best parts of my experience is having a friendly coach that is willing to listen and provide tools that are available to get through a difficul... Read More
The best parts of my experience is having a friendly coach that is willing to listen and provide tools that are available to get through a difficult process if done without it. Tools to be utilized at my leisure. Read Less
York Region District School Board
Some of the tools are difficult to use and require resources that are blocked by Microsoft.
Workshop: Establish Realistic IT Resource Management Practices
Workshops offer an easy way to accelerate your project. If you are unable to do the project yourself, and a Guided Implementation isn't enough, we offer low-cost delivery of our project workshops. We take you through every phase of your project and ensure that you have a roadmap in place to complete your project successfully.
Module 1: Take Stock of Organizational Supply and Demand
Obtain a high-level view of current resource management practices.
Identify current and target states of resource management maturity.
Perform an in-depth time-tracking audit and gain insight into how time is spent on project versus non-project work to calculate realized capacity.
Key Benefits Achieved
Assess current distribution of accountabilities in resource management.
Delve into your current problems to uncover root causes.
Validate capacity and demand estimations with a time-tracking survey.
Perform a root-cause analysis of resourcing challenges facing the organization.
Create a realistic estimate of project capacity.
Tab 2 of the Resource Management Supply-Demand Calculator, the Time Audit Workbook, and survey templates
Map all sources of demand on resources at a high level.
Tabs 3 and 4 of the Resource Management Supply-Demand Calculator
Validate your supply and demand assumptions by directly surveying your resources.
Complete the Time Audit Workbook
Module 2: Design a Realistic Resource Management Process
Construct a resource management strategy that aligns with your team’s process maturity levels.
Determine the resource management tool that will best support your processes.
Key Benefits Achieved
Identify the ideal dimensions to move forward with for the resource management project.
A tool selection that is appropriate for your processes and that your team will be able to support.
Determine a realistic amount of time and effort to dedicate toward maintaining the strategy.
Action the decision points in Info-Tech’s seven dimensions of resource management.
A wireframe for a right-sized resource management strategy
Review resource management tool options, and depending on your selection, prepare a vendor demo script or review and set up Info-Tech’s Portfolio Manager Lite.
A vendor demo script or Info-Tech’s Portfolio Manager Lite.
Customize a workflow and process steps within the bounds of your seven dimensions and informed by your tool selection.
A customized resource management process and Resource Management Playbook.
Establish Realistic IT Resource Management Practices
Holistically balance IT supply and demand to avoid overallocation.
Restore the right accountabilities for reconciling supply and demand.
"Who gets in trouble at the organization when too many projects are approved?
We’ve just exited a period of about 20-25 years where the answer to the above question was usually “nobody.” The officers of the corporation held nobody to account for the malinvestment of resources that comes from approving too many projects or having systemically unrealistic project due dates. Boards of directors failed to hold the officers accountable for that. And shareholders failed to hold boards of directors accountable for that.
But this is shifting right under our feet. Increasingly, PMOs are being managed with the mentality previously reserved for those in the finance department. In many cases, the PMOs are now reporting to the CFO! This represents a very simple and basic reversion to the concept of fiduciary duty: somebody will be held to account for the consumption of all those hours, and somebody should be the approver of projects who created the excess demand." – Barry Cousins Senior Director of Research, PMO Practice Info-Tech Research Group
Our understanding of the problem
This Research Is Designed For:
IT leaders who lack actionable evidence of a resource-supply, work-demand imbalance.
CIOs whose departments struggle to meet service and project delivery expectations with given resources.
Portfolio managers, PMO directors, and project managers whose portfolio and project plans suffer due to unstable resource availability.
This Research Will Help You:
Build trustworthy resource capacity data to support service and project portfolio management.
Develop sustainable resource management practices to help you estimate, and continually validate, your true resource capacity for services and projects.
Identify the demands that deplete your resource capacity without creating value for IT.
This Research Will Also Assist:
Steering committee and C-suite management who want to improve IT’s delivery of projects.
Project sponsors that want to ensure their projects get the promised resource time by their project managers.
This Research Will Help Them:
Ensure sufficient supply of time for projects to be successfully completed with high quality.
Communicate the new resource management practice and get stakeholder buy-in.
As CIO, you oversee a department that lacks the resource capacity to adequately meet organizational demand for new projects and services. As a result, project quality and timelines suffer, and service delivery lags.
You need a resource management strategy to help bring balance to supply and demand in order to improve IT’s ability to deliver.
The shift to matrix work structures has strained traditional methods of time tracking. Day-to-day demand is chaotic; staff are pulled in multiple directions by numerous people, making usable capacity data elusive.
The executive team approves too many projects, but is not held to account for the overspend on time. Instead, the IT worker is made liable, expected to simply get things done under excessive demands.
Instill a culture of capacity awareness. For years, the project portfolio management (PPM) industry has helped IT departments report on demand and usage, but it has largely failed to make capacity part of the conversation. This research helps inject capacity awareness into project and service portfolio planning, enabling IT to get proactive about constraints before overallocation spirals, and project and service delivery suffers.
Build a sustainable process. Efforts to get better at resource management often falter when you try to get too granular too quickly. Info-Tech’s approach starts at a high level, ensuring that capacity data is accurate and usable, and that IT’s process discipline is mature enough to maintain the data, before drilling down into greater levels of precision.
Establish a capacity hub. You will ultimately need a tool to help provide ongoing resource visibility. Follow the advice in this blueprint to help with your tool selection and ensure the reporting needs of both your team and executives are met.
Take a realistic approach to resource management. New organizational realities have made traditional, rigorous resource projections impossible to maintain. Accept reality and get realistic about where IT’s time goes.
Make IT’s capacity perpetually transparent. The best way to ensure projects are approved and scheduled based upon the availability of the right teams and skills is to shine a light into IT’s capacity and hold decision makers to account with usable capacity reports.
The availability of staff time is rarely factored into IT project and service delivery commitments
As a result, a lot gets promised and worked on, and staff are always busy, but very little actually gets done – at least not within given timelines or to expected levels of quality.
Organizations tend to bite off more than they can chew when it comes to project and service delivery commitments involving IT resources.
While the need for businesses to make an excess of IT commitments is understandable, the impacts of systemically overallocating IT are clearly negative:
Stakeholder relations suffer. Promises are made to the business that can’t be met by IT.
IT delivery suffers. Project timelines and quality frequently suffer, and service support regularly lags.
Employee engagement suffers. Anxiety and stress levels are consistently high among IT staff, while morale and engagement levels are low.
76% of organizations say they have too many projects on the go and an unmanageable and ever-growing backlog of things to get to. (Cooper, 2014)
Almost 70% of workers feel as though they have too much work on their plates and not enough time to do it. (Reynolds, 2016)
Resource management can help to improve workloads and project results, but traditional approaches commonly fall short
Traditional approaches to resource management suffer from a fundamental misconception about the availability of time in 2017.
The concept of resource management comes from a pre-World Wide Web era, when resource and project plans could be based on a relatively stable set of assumptions.
In the old paradigm, the availability of time was fairly predictable, as was the demand for IT services, so there was value to investing time into rigorous demand forecasts and planning.
Resource projections could be based in a secure set of assumptions – i.e. 8 hour days, 40 hour weeks – and staff had the time to support detailed resource management processes that provided accurate usage data.
Predictability. Change tended to be slow and deliberate, providing more stability for advanced, rigorous demand forecasts and planning.
Fixed hierarchy. Tasks, priorities, and decisions were communicated through a fixed chain of command.
Single-task focus. The old reality was more accommodating to sustained focus on one task at a time.
96% of organizations report problems with the accuracy of information on employee timesheets. (Dimensional, 2013)
Old reality resource forecasting inevitably falters under the weight of unpredictable demands and constant distractions
New realities are causing demands on workers’ time to be unpredictable and unrelenting, making a sustained focus on a specific task for any length of time elusive.
Part of the old resource management mythology is the idea that a person can do (for example) eight different one-hour tasks in eight hours of continuous work. This idea has gone from harmlessly mistaken to grossly unrealistic.
The predictability and focus have given way to more chaotic workplace realities. Technology is ubiquitous, and the demand for IT services is constant.
A day in IT is characterized by frequent task-switching, regular interruptions, and an influx of technology-enabled distractions.
Every 3 minutes and 5 seconds: How often the typical office worker switches tasks, either through self-directed or other-directed interruptions. (Schulte, 2015)
12 minutes, 40 seconds: The average amount of time in-between face-to-face interruptions in matrix organizations. (Anderson, 2015)
23 minutes, 15 seconds: The average amount of time it takes to become on task, productive, and focused again after an interruption. (Schulte, 2015)
759 hours: The average number of hours lost per employee annually due to distractions and interruptions. (Huth, 2015)
The validity of traditional, rigorous resource planning has long been an illusion. New realities are making the sustained focus and stable assumptions that old reality projections relied on all but impossible to maintain.
For resource management practices to be effective, they need to evolve to meet new realities
New organizational realities have exacerbated traditional approaches to time tracking, making accurate and usable resource data elusive.
The technology revolution that began in the 1990s ushered in a new paradigm in organizational structures. Matrix reporting structures, diminished supervision of knowledge workers, massive multi-tasking, and a continuous stream of information and communications from the outside world have smashed the predictability and stability of the old paradigm.
The resource management industry has largely failed to evolve. It remains stubbornly rooted in old realities, relying on calculations and rollups that become increasingly unsustainable and irrelevant in our high-autonomy staff cultures and interruption-driven work days.
Unpredictable. Technologies and organizational strategies change before traditional IT demand forecasts and project plans can be realized.
Matrix management. Staff can be accountable to multiple project managers and functional managers at any given time.
Multi-task focus. In the new reality, workers’ attentions are scattered across multiple tasks and projects at any given time.
87% of organizations report challenges with traditional methods of time tracking and reporting. (Dimensional, 2013)
40% of working time is not tracked or tracked inaccurately by staff. (actiTIME, 2016)
While time is money, the statistics around resource visibility and utilization suggest that the vast majority of organizations don’t spend their available time all that wisely.
Research shows that ineffective resource management directly impacts an organization’s bottom line, contributing to such cost drains as the systemic late delivery of projects and increased project costs.
Despite this, the majority of organizations fail to treat staff time like the precious commodity it is.
As the results of a 2016 survey show, the top three pain points for IT and PMO leaders all revolve around a wider cultural negligence concerning staff time (Alexander, TechRepublic, 2016):
Constant change that affects staff assignments
An inability to prioritize shared resources
Top risks associated with poor resource management
Inability to complete projects on time – 52%
Inability to innovate fast enough – 39%
Increased project costs – 38%
Missed business opportunities – 34%
Dissatisfied customers or clients – 32%
12 times more waste – Organizations with poor resource management practices waste nearly 12 times more resource hours than high-performing organizations. (PMI, 2014)
The concept of fiduciary duty represents the best way to bring balance to supply and demand, and improve project outcomes
Unless someone is accountable for controlling the consumption of staff hours, too much work will get approved and committed to without evidence of sufficient resourcing.
Who is accountable for controlling the consumption of staff hours?
In many ways, no question is more important to the organization’s bottom line – and certainly, to the effectiveness of a resource management strategy.
Historically, the answer would have been the executive layer of the organization. However, in the 1990s management largely abdicated its obligation to control resources and expenditures via “employee empowerment.”
Controls on approvals became less rigid, and accountability for choosing what to do (and not do) shifted onto the shoulders of the individual worker. This creates a current paradigm where no one is accountable for the malinvestment…
…of resources that comes from approving too many projects. Instead, it’s up to individual workers to sink-or-swim, as they attempt to reconcile, day after day, seemingly infinite organizational demand with their finite supply of working hours.
If your organization has higher demand (i.e. approved project work) than supply (i.e. people’s time), your staff will be the final decision makers on what does and does NOT get worked on.
Effective time leadership distinguishes top performing senior executives
"Everything requires time… It is the one truly universal condition. All work takes place in time and uses up time. Yet most people take for granted this unique, irreplaceable and necessary resource. Nothing else, perhaps, distinguishes effective executives as much as their tender loving care of time." – Peter Drucker (quoted in Frank)
67% of employees surveyed believe their CEOs focus too much on decisions based in short-term financial results and not enough time on decisions that create a stable, positive workplace for staff. (2016 Edelman Trust Barometer)
Bring balance to supply and demand with realistic resource management practices
Use Info-Tech’s approach to resource management to capture an accurate view of where your time goes and achieve sustained visibility into your capacity for new projects.
Realistic project resource management starts by aligning demand with capacity, and then developing tactics to sustain alignment, even in the chaos of our fast-paced, rapidly changing, interruption-driven project environments.
This blueprint will help you develop practices to promote and maintain accurate resourcing data, while developing tactics to continually inform decision makers’ assumptions about how much capacity is realistically available for project work.
This research follows a three-phase approach to sustainable practices:
Info-Tech’s three-phase framework is structured around a practical, tactical approach to resource management. It’s not about what you put together as a one-time snapshot. It’s about what you can and will maintain every week, even during a crisis. When you stop maintaining resource management data, it’s nearly impossible to catch up and you’re usually forced to start fresh.
Info-Tech’s approach is rooted in our seven dimensions of resource management
Action the decision points across Info-Tech’s seven dimensions to ensure your resource management process is guided by realistic data and process goals.
Default project vs. non-project ratio
How much time is available for projects once non-project demands are factored in?
How often is the allocation data verified, reconciled, and reported for use?
How far into the future can you realistically predict resource supply?
Scope of allocation
To whom is time allocated?
How long is each allocation period?
Granularity of time allocation
What’s the smallest unit of time to allocate?
Granularity of work assignment
What is time allocated to?
This blueprint will help you make the right decisions for your organization across each of these dimensions to ensure your resource management practices match your current process maturity levels.
Once your framework is defined, we’ll equip you with a tactical plan to help keep supply and demand continually balanced
This blueprint will help you customize a playbook to ensure your allocations are perpetually balanced week after week, month after month.
Developing a process is one thing, sustaining it is another.
The goal of this research isn’t just to achieve a one-time balancing of workloads and expect that this will stand the test of time.
The true test of a resource management process is how well it facilitates the flow of accurate and usable data as workloads become chaotic, and fires and crises erupt.
Info-Tech’s approach will help you develop a playbook and a “rebalancing routine” that will help ensure your allocations remain perpetually current and balanced.
The sample routine to the right shows you an example of what this rebalancing process will look like (customizing this process is covered in Phase 3 of the blueprint).
Sample “rebalancing” routine
Maintain a comprehensive list of the sources of demand (i.e. document the matrix).
Catalog the demand.
Allocate the supply.
Forecast the capacity to your forecast horizon.
Identify and prepare work packages or tasks for unsatisfied demand to ensure that supply can be utilized if it becomes free.
Reconcile any imbalance by repeating steps 1-5 on update frequency, say, weekly or monthly.
Info-Tech’s method is complemented by a suite of resource management tools and templates
Each phase of this blueprint is accompanied by supporting deliverables to help plan your resource management strategy and sustain your process implementation.
Resource management depends on the flow of information and data from the project level up to functional managers, project managers, and beyond – CIOs, steering committees, and senior executives.
Tools are required to help plan, organize, and facilitate this flow, and each phase of this blueprint is centered around tools and templates to help you successfully support your process implementation.
Use Info-Tech’s Portfolio Manager Lite to support your new process without a heavy upfront investment in tools
Spreadsheets can provide a viable alternative for organizations not ready to invest in an expensive tool, or for those not getting what they need from their commercial selections.
While homegrown solutions like spreadsheets and intranet sites lack the robust functionality of commercial offerings, they have dramatically lower complexity and cost-in-use.
Info-Tech’s Portfolio Manager Lite is a sophisticated, scalable, and highly customizable spreadsheet-based solution that will get your new resource management process up and running, without a heavy upfront cost.
Kinds of PPM solutions used by Info-Tech clients
Homemade – 46%
Commercial – 33%
No Solution – 21%
(Info-Tech Research Group (2016), N=433)
Samples of Portfolio Manager Lite's output and reporting tabs
Info-Tech’s approach to resource management is part of our larger project portfolio management framework
This blueprint will help you master the art of resource management and set you up for greater success in other project portfolio management capabilities.
Resource management is one capability within Info-Tech’s larger project portfolio management (PPM) framework.
Resource visibility and capacity awareness permeates the whole of PPM, helping to ensure the right intake decisions get made, and projects are scheduled according to resource and skill availability.
Whether you have an existing PPM strategy that you are looking to optimize or you are just starting on your PPM journey, this blueprint will help you situate your resource management processes within a larger project and portfolio framework.
Info-Tech’ s PPM framework is based on extensive research and practical application, and complements industry standards such as those offered by PMI and ISACA.
Project Portfolio Management
Status & Progress Reporting
Intake, Approval, & Prioritization
Organizational Change Management
Realize the value that improved resource management practices could bring to your organization
Spend your company’s HR dollars more efficiently.
Improved resource management and capacity awareness will allow your organization to improve resource utilization and increase project throughput.
CIOs, PMOs, and portfolio managers can use this blueprint to improve the alignment between supply and demand. You should be able to gauge the value through the following metrics:
Near-Term Success Metrics (6 to 12 months)
Increased frequency of currency (i.e. more accurate and usable resource data and reports).
Improved job satisfaction from project resources due to more even workloads.
Better ability to schedule project start dates and estimate end dates due to recourse visibility.
Long-Term Success Metrics (12 to 24 months)
More projects completed on time.
Reclaimed capacity for project work.
A reduction in resource waste and increased resource utilization on productive project work.
Ability to track estimated vs. actual budget and work effort on projects.
In the past 12 months, Info-Tech clients have reported an average measured value rating of $550,000 from the purchase of workshops based on this research.
Info-Tech client masters resource management by shifting the focus to capacity forecasting
There are more than 200 people in the IT organization.
IT is essentially a shared services environment with clients spanning multiple institutions across a wide geography.
The PMO identified dedicated resources for resource management.
The definition of “resource management” was constantly shifting between accounting the past (i.e. time records), the present (i.e. work assignments), and the future (i.e. long term project allocations).
The task data set (i.e. for current work assignments) was not aligned to the historic time records or future capacity.
It was difficult to predict or account for the spend, which exceeded 30,000 hours per month.
“We’re told we can’t say NO to projects. But this new tool set and approach allows us to give an informed WHEN.” – Senior PMO Director, Education
The leadership decided to forecast and communicate their resource capacity on a 3-4 month forecast horizon using Info-Tech’s Portfolio Manager 2017.
Unallocated resource capacity was identified within certain skill sets that had previously been assessed as fully allocated. While some of the more high-visibility staff were indeed overallocated, other more junior personnel had been systemically underutilized on projects.
The high demand for IT project resourcing was immediately placed in the context of a believable, credible expression of supply.
Info-Tech offers various levels of support to best suit your needs
“Our team has already made this critical project a priority, and we have the time and capability, but some guidance along the way would be helpful.”
“Our team knows that we need to fix a process, but we need assistance to determine where to focus. Some check-ins along the way would help keep us on track.”
“We need to hit the ground running and get this project kicked off immediately. Our team has the ability to take this over once we get a framework and strategy in place.”
“Our team does not have the time or the knowledge to take this project on. We need assistance through the entirety of this project.”
Diagnostics and consistent frameworks used throughout all four options
Establish Realistic IT Resource Management Practices – project overview
1.1 Complete and review PPM Current State Scorecard Assessment
1.2 Perform root cause analysis of resource management challenges
1.3 Initiate time audit survey of management and staff
Take stock of supply and demand
2.1 Review the outputs of the time audit survey and analyze the data
2.2 Analyze project and non-project demands, including the sources of those demands
2.3 Set the seven dimensions of resource management
Design a resource management process
3.1 Review resource management tool options
3.2 Prepare a vendor demo script or review Portfolio Manager Lite
3.3 Build process steps to ensure data accuracy and sustainability
Pilot and refine the process
4.1 Define methods for piloting the strategy (after the workshop)
4.2 Complete the Process Pilot Plan Template
4.3 Conduct a mock resource management meeting
4.4 Perform a RACI exercise
Communicate and implement the process
5.1 Brainstorm potential implications of the new strategy and develop a plan to manage stakeholder and staff resistance to the strategy
5.2 Customize the Resource Management Communications Template
5.3 Finalize the playbook
PPM Current State Scorecard Assessment
Root cause analysis
Time Audit Workbook and survey templates
Resource Management Supply-Demand Calculator
Portfolio Manager Lite
PPM Solution Vendor Demo Script
Tentative Resource Management Playbook
Process Pilot Plan Template
Resource Management Communications Template
Finalized Resource Management Playbook
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